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Q & A with The Mindy Project’s Creator and Executive Producer Mindy Kaling

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The New FOX Tuesday lineup has made quite a splash this fall season with the new show, The Mindy Project. Created by Mindy Kaling, the show has already received an order for nine more episodes this season.

Tonight, The Mindy Project returns at 9:30 p.m. with the episode, “Halloween.” THE MINDY PROJECT: Created by Emmy Award-nominated writer/producer and New York Times best-selling author Mindy Kaling (The Office), THE MINDY PROJECT stars Kaling as a skilled OB/GYN navigating the tricky waters of both her personal and professional life. THE MINDY PROJECT premieres Tuesday, Sept. 25 (9:30-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2012 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: Mary Ellen Matthews/FOX Kaling recently took the time to speak with press about her popular new series, where she discussed wearing multiple hats as the show’s star, creator, and executive producer; if she would like her former Office co-stars to appear on her show; and shared some scoop about tonight’s episode.

In the last episode we saw, you kind of had a nice little spark with Tommy Dewey, who played Josh. I know he’s back in the next episode. Is this going to be a little romance that we’re going to see play out for a little bit?

It is. I just shot with him last night, and I’m shooting with him again today. It’s been really fun shooting with Tommy, because on the surface, he just looks like this handsome, 90210 kind of character, but we’re playing him as a little bit of a weirdo. He is a weirdo; he comes out a little strong, he’s a little off-putting. And to me, seeing people like that redeem themselves is much more appealing than kind of just – a lot of romantic comedies use this kind of generic, boring, kind of good looking love interest, and he’s certainly the anti that.

Since you wear so many hats on The Mindy Project, what is it like to be you in a typical day, right now?

Typical day? Typical day is I wake up between 5:30 and 6:00 in the morning. I walk like a zombie to my shower and take a shower. I have [a lot of] family and friends on the East Coast, so I’ll answer texts from them. Drive to work, listen to some Justin Timberlake in the car on the way there. Hair and makeup. My God, this is so boring, I can’t believe it.

I check in with the writers. They get in around 10 a.m., and I’ve been acting for a couple hours and am always excited to see them, because when I get to work, it’s like a ghost town. It’s like The Walking Dead when I first show up. There’s nobody, except for me, so I wait until they get there a little while later.

I wrap, usually around five or six at night and in between writing stuff, I will go check in with the writers and then I stay between ten and midnight hanging out with them. It sounds like a long schedule, but because it’s my show and because I’m working with essentially all my best friends, it feels like a very grueling vacation, if that makes sense.

You’re billed as the quadruple threat; you’re an actor, you’re a writer, you’re a producer, and you’re a director. What’s the key to being successful in doing all those, especially when you are doing it all on one series?

Well, the good part of it is that I can’t fixate on any one thing, because there’s too many things happening at once, so that’s very good. I constantly have to shift focus, which I think is really good in keeping me no fixating on things. I have an amazing team. I spent a lot of time hiring people. It was really tough getting people out of contracts and things like that, so I spent a really long time hiring amazing writers, heads of departments, all the actors and everything, so that I trust them a lot and I can delegate things that I wouldn’t normally necessarily do. If it wasn’t for that, then I actually couldn’t do this job. I also every morning drink a blend of vegetables and fruits that’s a disgusting green potion that I believe keeps me alive.

About Kirsten Coachman

Kirsten Coachman is an Entertainment Writer/Blogger from the San Francisco Bay Area. She has interviewed a variety of people from across the entertainment spectrum, including singer-songwriter/Matchbox Twenty frontman Rob Thomas, fun.'s Andrew Dost, singer-songwriter Christina Perri, American Idol winners (David Cook, Kris Allen, Lee DeWyze & Scotty McCreery) and acclaimed writer-director Derek Cianfrance. Connect with Kirsten on Twitter & Facebook.